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clatter

[klat-er]
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verb (used without object)
  1. to make a loud, rattling sound, as that produced by hard objects striking rapidly one against the other: The shutters clattered in the wind.
  2. to move rapidly with such a sound: The iron-wheeled cart clattered down the street.
  3. to talk fast and noisily; chatter: They clattered on and on about their children.
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verb (used with object)
  1. to cause to clatter: clattering the pots and pans in the sink.
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noun
  1. a rattling noise or series of rattling noises: The stagecoach made a terrible clatter going over the wooden bridge.
  2. noisy disturbance; din; racket.
  3. noisy talk; din of voices: They had to shout over the clatter at the cocktail party.
  4. idle talk; gossip.
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Origin of clatter

before 1050; Middle English clateren, Old English clatr- (in clatrunge); cognate with Dutch klateren to rattle; see -er6
Related formsclat·ter·er, nounclat·ter·ing·ly, adverbclat·ter·y, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

clackhurtleclangballyhoorattlepandemoniumhullabaloorumpusracketblusterclangorsmashingshatteringsmashclanknoiseclashroarbumpshatter

Examples from the Web for clatter

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • He threw the helmet with a clatter on to the table as if it had been the knave's canting head.

    Viviette

    William J. Locke

  • He entered in the clatter of the shop bell with an air of sombre and vexed exhaustion.

    The Secret Agent

    Joseph Conrad

  • The clatter of crockery did not cease in the adjoining room.

  • There was a clatter and rattle of speeding hoofs, which rapidly died out.

    The Law-Breakers

    Ridgwell Cullum

  • The clatter of hoofs was growing louder with each passing second.

    The Law-Breakers

    Ridgwell Cullum


British Dictionary definitions for clatter

clatter

verb
  1. to make or cause to make a rattling noise, esp as a result of movement
  2. (intr) to chatter
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noun
  1. a rattling sound or noise
  2. a noisy commotion, such as one caused by loud chatter
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Derived Formsclatterer, nounclatteringly, adverbclattery, adjective

Word Origin

Old English clatrung clattering (gerund); related to Dutch klateren to rattle, German klatschen to smack, Norwegian klattra to knock
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for clatter

v.

late Old English clatrung "clattering, noise," verbal noun implying an Old English *clatrian, of imitative origin. Cf. Middle Dutch klateren, East Frisian klatern, dialectal German klattern. The noun is attested from mid-14c.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper